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Coronavirus (COVID-19): the policing response and what you need to know

Police officer

As a police officer, your job is to reduce crime and make a real difference to the communities in Avon and Somerset. You will provide support and reassurance to people on what might feel like the worst day of their lives and many will look to you for guidance and protection.

Find out what it takes to be a police officer.

What we offer

We offer a unique, stimulating and rewarding career with an opportunity to make a real difference to your community. You will work as an officer from your first day and we will enable you to unleash your full potential by providing dedicated support and training that will support your professional development.

As a police officer, you will engage directly with our communities and will be responsible for ensuring they receive an outstanding policing service.

Our officers are leaders and every day make a positive and lasting difference to the lives of the public that we serve. We see individuality as a strength and empower our people to make the right decision for the public that we serve.

In addition to a unique and rewarding career, you will receive:

  • A starting salary of £21,402, in the PCDA entry route and £24,780 for the DHEP entry route. Your pay will increase to £27,030 on completion of probation under both entry routes.
  • Flexible working, full time, part time and job share opportunities.
  • Annual leave of 22 paid days, increasing to 30 days as length of service increases, plus public holidays.
  • An undergraduate honours degree in Professional Policing Practice with entry through the Police Constable Degree Apprenticeship (PCDA) route or a Level 6 Diploma in Professional Policing Practice with entry through our Degree Holder Entry Programme (DHEP).
  • Training and development including mentoring and leadership programmes alongside key technical skills.
  • Career opportunities available in various locations across the force area.
  • Access to the Police Pension Scheme (2015).
  • Enhanced Maternity benefits.
  • Lifestyle benefits, including sports, gym and social facilities and activities, cycle to work scheme and childcare vouchers, including access to the Force Club.
  • Allowances for working different shift patterns, including bank holiday payments.
  • A generous occupational sick pay scheme which provides a top up to statutory sick pay payments for up to 12 months.
  • Wellbeing support and advice, for professional and personal matters including an employee assistance programme, physiotherapy and an in-house occupational health service.
  • A range of public sector discounts from insurance to holidays and access to student discounts and other benefits during the duration of your study.
  • Access to the Force Club for discounts on various activities.
  • Free parking at some sites where available.
  • Access to supportive and active staff groups, networks and associations.

Find out more about why you should work for us.

What we need

When working as a police officer, you will:

  • be driven to make a difference, providing an outstanding service to all communities in the Avon and Somerset area
  • have the courage and integrity to hold a position of trust and responsibility
  • be passionate about making a difference, helping others in their time of need, possibly on the worst day they have experienced
  • have the ability to communicate effectively and understand the right tone and approach to take when faced with unpredictable and changeable situations
  • be able to think quickly and clearly and make good decisions under pressure
  • actively learn from situations that did not go to plan and reflect on what can be improved, taking feedback and encouraging others to learn
  • have cultural awareness and want to actively engage in partnerships with others, understanding their needs whatever their background and situation
  • be an ambassador for policing: professional, friendly and focused on building relationships with communities, colleagues and partner agencies
  • be enthusiastic, reliable, self-disciplined, adaptable and compassionate enough to take control of situations
  • take pride in your work and be proud to say you are a police officer

The role of a police officer is varied, you will encounter a wide range of situations and no two days will be the same. As a police officer, you might:

  • work alongside communities, liaising with community groups and individuals
  • provide a visible presence to deter crime and reassure the community
  • provide support and reassurance to people who have been subjected to a crime or anti-social behaviour
  • conduct patrol duties on foot, by car and bicycle
  • develop community knowledge to identify individuals and locations at risk of being involved in crime
  • respond to calls and requests from the public to assist at incidents
  • keep the peace at public meetings, social events, processions, trade disputes or strikes
  • diffuse potentially volatile situations with regard for the safety of all involved
  • act with sensitivity when dealing with situations such as delivering news of a sudden death or when dealing with sexual crimes
  • conduct initial investigations, gather evidence, take statements and comply with relevant legal requirements
  • interview suspects, victims and witnesses in accordance with relevant legislation
  • conduct arrests with due regard for the human rights, security and health and safety of detained individuals, members of the public, colleagues and yourself
  • prepare crime reports and present case files
  • attend and give evidence in court and at other hearings
How to become a police officer (PCDA and DHEP routes)

We currently offer two entry routes to becoming a police officer:

1. Police Constable Degree Apprenticeship (PCDA)

The entry route to becoming a patrol officer is through the Police Constable Degree Apprenticeship (PCDA).

To apply you must:

  • have a minimum of a Level 3 qualification (2 x A Levels) or equivalent, or
  • have been a Special Constable for the last 18 months with independent patrol status, or
  • have been a Police Community Support Officer for the last 18 months and have completed probation, or
  • have worked as a Detention Officer, Call Handler or Dispatcher within Avon and Somerset for at least 18 months

Find out more about the Police Constable Degree Apprenticeship.

2. Degree Holder Entry Programme (DHEP)

To become a detective constable within Avon and Somerset, you will join through our Degree Holder Entry Programme (DHEP). We will soon also be offering entry into patrol policing roles through our DHEP route.

To apply for either route, you must:

  • have attained a bachelor’s degree (or international equivalent) in any subject (other than Professional Policing Practice) prior to DHEP course start date

Find out more about the Detective Degree Holder Entry Programme.

Find out more about the Patrol officer Degree Holder Entry Programme coming soon.

Recruitment process

Depending on which route into policing you take, you will follow a different recruitment process. Read more about the:



If you have previously worked for us or another police force, you may be eligible to re-join as a police officer.


The police promotions process assesses competence at rank and potential at the next rank to identify and appoint future leaders.

Find out more about current vacancies and the police promotion process.


If you currently serve in a Home Office Constabulary, you are eligible to apply for a transfer to Avon and Somerset Police.

View current vacancies and find out how to apply for a transfer.

Ready to join us?

Recruitment for police officers and detective constables is currently closed.

Contact our Talent Acquisition team to make a recruitment related query.

Stay up to date

Find out about our latest vacancies by registering for our job alert email service, or join our Talent Bank to be contacted about suitable vacancies.

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